Crotch Machine to City Planning

I’ve been known to say I’m on my third career, but there have been many jobs before and between. Those before and between jobs include waitress, carhop, bookkeeper and the toughest job of all, being a mother. Although running the crotch machine at a local pantyhose factory is fun to reflect on, my first official job was definitely the strangest.

photo-27I was a telemarketer back when most people had a home phone. I didn’t offer magazine subscriptions or carpet cleaning. Instead, the offer was a free burial space to anyone who’d listen to a sales pitch on pre-need planning for cemetery services. My father set me up doing it when I was just 17. I lasted less than a year. It was a tough sales pitch with many a strange reaction and plenty hang ups.

My dad became ill during my senior year of college, and I ended up back in that cemetery office dealing with grieving families, selling headstones and all that’s involved in making a cemetery run.

I eventually moved on to my second career and used my journalism/English degree as newspaper reporter for nearly twenty years. My third career started when a job came up for a city planning position on a beat I was covering as a reporter. I’d been writing about city and county planning for a long time and knew enough to take it on. I’ve spent the last seven years as a city planner, a job I never dreamed of, yet enjoy… most days.

My absolute dream job, fiction writer, is one I’ve worked at in my spare time for years. I’ve had a few short stories published and hope to eventually call myself a novelist. I’ll eventually retire from city hall and writing will be all I do, but I’m not sure I could ever call it “work.”

What’s the strangest job you’ve ever had? What’s your dream job?

Photo by Lori Ericson